End Hunger UK report: Fix Universal Credit

We all rely on the welfare safety net being there for us in times of financial stress or hardship. But Universal Credit is currently failing in this task.

This is according to a July 2018 report by End Hunger UK on Universal Credit and food poverty in the UK.

Policy recommendations include:

  • Urgent action to improve the flexibility and support for people applying for and in receipt of Universal Credit, including better training for staff and increased flexibility for claimants
  • Improve the design of Universal Credit to ensure it does not leave more people at risk of debt and destitution, including reducing the wait time for first payment from five weeks to two weeks
  • Ensure Universal Credit provides people with enough income to afford good food on a regular basis, by bringing Universal Credit levels in line with the actual cost of living

Those who gave evidence for the report said:

Every single client who has been put on UC has stated they are
now in more debt

The minimum five-week wait is crippling for many who don’t have savings to fall back on

Read the report in full (pdf).